Bangladesh proposes major OIC reforms to build bridges with all Muslims

Bangladesh proposes major OIC reforms to build bridges with all Muslims

  Senior Correspondent,
Published: 2018-05-05 15:21:44.0 BdST Updated: 2018-05-05 16:12:03.0 BdST

Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali (File Photo)

Bangladesh has put forward a major reform proposal before the member states of the OIC to spread the benefits of the Islamic group to all Muslims across the world.

Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali made the proposal at the OIC foreign ministers’ meet on Saturday and said Muslims from non-Muslim countries should not remain untouched by the goodworks of OIC.

“That is why OIC needs reforms and re-structuring,” he said, explaining that a number of countries – not OIC members, have large numbers of Muslims as their citizens.

“The Muslims may be the minority in those countries, but in terms of number – they often exceed the total population of many OIC member countries. “There is a need to build bridges with those non-OIC countries, so that a large number of Muslim populations do not remain untouched by the good work of OIC,” he said.

Mahmood Ali did not mention any names specifically, but India, which is the second largest country in the world in terms of population, has over 180 million Muslims. The number is more than the total population of all OIC countries except Indonesia.

The foreign minister said as the world is changing in many ways and that the OIC cannot continue with business as usual. “We need to re-think our work, method and process of functioning to cater to the needs of the current era and beyond. Otherwise, we risk making our organisation redundant,” he said.

The theme of this year’s meeting, the 45th, is ‘Islamic values for sustainable peace, solidarity and development’. Mahmood Ali said the theme is based on three pillars – peace, solidarity and development – which are interlinked.

“Today, we are facing formidable challenges of Islamophobia, terrorism, extremism, conflict and inequality – within and among states.” “In our part of the world, we see the persecution and purging of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar,” he said, urging for OIC’s action.

“The exodus of Rohingya is the world’s most rapid and intense crisis of forcibly displaced people since the 1994 Rwandan genocide. They are often described as the world’s most persecuted minorities,” he said.

“In the OIC, we should take strong actions manifesting solidarity with them and strengthen efforts in persuading the Government of Myanmar to take urgent measures for a sustainable return of Rohingyas to their homeland in Rakhine.”

He also called for solidarity among the member states and said “solidarity for us refers to solidarity in terms of human individual and social-economic inclusion.” “Islam was revealed to ensure the worldly and other-worldly well-being of all mankind on an equal footing. Indeed, Islam is not intended for a certain people, race or ethnicity.”


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